Saturday, December 4, 2010

Silver bears or is it Silver bulls?

I ran across this Xtranormal video while browsing the Free Republic site this morning. It looks really, really hot. The question is, do you go out and act on this, or check it out as much as it can be checked out? Anyway, the idea is that there may be a short squeeze coming on silver and somebody may have to cover their short or face ruinous losses. These somebodies may be large bank, like J.P. Morgan Chase. This is a sensational video. By that I mean, not sensational in a good way, but in a sense of it being extraordinary in every sense of the word. You may want to watch this and consider it carefully. I make no recommendations, however.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Humor can go a long way

Here's is my next movie, enjoy: (Update: a link to my next video here:)

xtranormal video

Here's my latest video.  It is more practice than anything else.  Not completely original either, but it is viewable, I think.  Update:  I improved the video a little, it is almost good now. lol

My Way News - Unmanned US spacecraft returns after 7-month trip

My Way News - Unmanned US spacecraft returns after 7-month trip

Lindbergh redux?

Is spaceflight impossibly expensive?  Maybe not.  Check out this post on Quantum G blog.

His estimate of a single astronaut on an Apollo 8 flyby and return from the Moon to be 130 million dollars.  Sounds cheap, relatively speaking.

Go West, Young Man ( Or is it East?)

I have to laugh at all this admiration that Thomas Friedman has for China.  You put him and Krugman together and you've got a real dynamic duo there.  Let's see.  Krugman believes that the Gilded Age in American history was really bad.  Income taxes didn't exist and there was rampant income inequality.  It was horrible, horrible! (gasp)  But here's Thomas Friedman singing the praises of China.  But guess what?  Of all the countries in the world, China comes closest to the Gilded Age model, not to Krugman's model.  Maybe Friedman likes China because the leaders are Communists, but their public policy is capitalist though.   So, is this a contradiction here?  Or does Krugman disagree with Friedman in a rather profound way?  But they don't mention each other.  So, maybe they aren't aware of the discrepancy.

Krugman advocates government's spending of a lot of money.  But according to the CIA factbook, China's government spends a little of 1 trillion dollars out of a 9 trillion dollar economy.  The US spends more than twice as much.  Yet China grows, and the US stagnates.  Now, which model works best?  But, I would guess that Friedman wouldn't be against China's spending much more.  He likes big projects.  I think he admires high speed rail.

But Friedman believes in global warming.  So, what about China's massive use of coal?  This is the baddest fossil fuel of them all.  Friedman must be okay with that.  Or he's ignoring it.

I think China is serious about wealth generation.  Krugman isn't.  Neither is Friedman.  They love that government control and power.  That's the appeal of China.

Xtranormal

I have used this site to make 3 movies now and, on the basis of this, I downloaded their software so I can work offline.  This offline version is faster, but not necessarily easier to use.  There are a lot of details in using the software that have to be mastered before you can make a movie.  With a lot of trial and error, I made a new one yesterday, but I don't know if I'll publish it.  It is pretty much basic stuff on how to use cameras and do some basic action and so forth.  The script isn't interesting either, but I needed one so that the characters could talk.  Now for an interesting script!  That may be the biggest challenge of them all.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Yesterday's rally continues

A couple years ago, when everybody was losing their a$$ets, it was a good year for me.  There was a head and shoulders chart pattern in the dow and all the signs pointed to a recession.  No reason at all to be long.  So, I went short and made some money off it.  I suppose people would resent that, buy you don't win them all, and if you lose them all, you won't be around for long.

But 2009 wasn't so good.  I kept going short, but the market kept rallying.  I had to drop out awhile and figure it out because it didn't make sense.  Finally, a key piece fell into place.  It was quantitative easing.  I couldn't believe that people would buy into a free lunch as sound economic policy. But that is just what they did.  This is why I couldn't see the rally and why I couldn't accept it when it continued.

Now we got a rally going again.  This is consistent with the quantitative easing being restarted.  As you may know, quantitative easing was discontinued sometime in the spring.  And so the market languished until now.  Like a trained monkey, the buyers are back on Wall Street buying up stocks with all the funny money.  Well, I ain't buying a bit of it.  I won't buy into something that I don't believe in, and I damn sure don't believe in that.

But gold is doing well again today.   Oil is up, the dollar is down.  I won't bet on oil, because this economy won't have enough steam to push oil back up to the heights we saw in 2008.  The dollar?  I think that the race to the bottom is on.  Any attempt to weaken the dollar will meet with parallel attempts by other central banks which will be necessary in order preserve their respective countries' trade competitiveness. Quantitative easing may appear to work, but in the end, all that is being accomplished is a debasement of the currency.  Of course, the conclusion should be obvious, don't you think?  Apparently not to Wall Street.

Strange dream last night

It went something like the Matrix, but different.  Somebody or something was controlling people's minds.  Everybody was reduced to subhuman forms, yet they were still human.  The subhuman form existed only in the mind, not in reality.  Somehow, I was on the outside of this not being affected.  The Queen wanted to talk to the leader of the subhumans, who looked like a frog.  I located the frog and started to follow, but the frog got away.

I was given as seemingly impossible task of tracking the moon from inside a building where the moon can't be seen.  Don't get this at all.

Somehow, I ended up on a roof where water flowed from it.  At the point where the water began flowing, people seem to materalize out of nowhere and rolled down to the water and were carried away.  I interpret this as the source of whatever is controlling everything.

This dream doesn't make sense.  But the mind control part does.  All of society is regulated by mind control.  It works as well as it does because people don't question it.  They simply follow it.  Maybe that explains the subhuman part of the dream.  People are less than human if they don't use the intelligence that they were born with.  At least, that is what I think.

Solar dishes and sun cubes

Just looking around some old folders for info I dug up a few years ago on the subject of solar power.  The concept that caught my attention was of the solar dish engine.  This looks a lot like one of the uses for the hydrogen tank of the shuttle's external tank that I've written about. That idea for the external tank was to focus sunlight by using mirrors.  The focal point would be very hot and be useful for melting down metals.  However, if you would attach a stirling engine at that focal point, you could generate electricity instead.  That electricity could in turn be used for base operations on a space base, or be beamed down to the surface of the moon in order to provide power to a base there.

Here's another another concept called the Suncube.   This system looks modular, so perhaps it can be put together in a large system of these Suncubes to generate large amounts of power.  The Suncube uses a fresnel lens to concentrate the sun's rays onto the photoelectric cell.  This improves its output.  I saw of demonstration of this concept on a website before.  I don't have the link, though.  Anyway, the guy just put a fresnel lens over the photovoltaic cell, and the output increased dramatically.  Very convincing.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

What is NASA's Secret Astrobiology Announcement? - Yahoo! News

What is NASA's Secret Astrobiology Announcement? - Yahoo! News

Captain Zero's moonbase

My latest movie!  This is pretty interesting little gizmo to make your ideas come to life. (sort of)

Stock rally today

There's a nice rally going on in stocks, but I also notice that oil is jumping too.  Let's see if that pattern continues.  It's not for nothing that oil reached 150 dollars per barrel in 2008.  The energy problem has not been solved.  How can the economy withstand very high oil prices?  It can't and it won't.  Any rally will be short lived as it will also whip up inflation fears eventually.  That's my prediction.  Let's see how that turns out.

Topless protests in Ukraine

From the looks of most of these girls, they should have kept their tops on.

A politicians lament

I wrote this in my first blog in 2004.  Now, not by popular demand is a rerun.

Poll

I set up a poll last month ( it is now December 1st) and it is concluding today.  So far, only two votes.  Just in case there is anybody out there who doesn't know about this poll, this is a final reminder.  The poll is located near the bottom of the page, on the left.  As of this writing there are five hours left to vote.

With only two votes, it would seem that I should forget about this blog and spend my time doing something else.  But I know I have more than just two readers.  Maybe not that many more, but more than two.  Obviously, this blog can't be exploited for making money with these audience levels.  Yet I was hopeful that I could expand that a bit.  But there is a long, long way to go to get this blog to a point of being a money making proposition.  Evidently, the interest isn't there.  I can continue with the blog anyway and keep my hopes up for a break, or concede that it isn't really going anywhere.  If it isn't going anywhere, I can just quit, or continue it as a hobby.  Or continue as a hobby hoping to make it a self sustaining money making proposition eventually.  That final sentence may be the way to go.

I like doing this.  But it isn't for money.  At least for now.  Maybe never, but as long as I like doing it, that could be reason enough to continue.  Anyway, thanks for the support of those of you who have come.  I will try to provide interesting things in the future, but it must be understood that I can't spend all my time on this when it doesn't make money and I need to make a living.  I'll try to post something on a regular basis.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Abbot and Costello's Who's on First

I just made this movie using Xtranormal website.  The site is a little harder to use than what I would like.  But this didn't turn out too, too bad.

Head and Shoulders Pattern in Gold?

This technical pattern is one that I am quite familiar with, unfortunately.  It was a hard lesson learned back in 1998-1999 when the Y2K buzz was going and I decided to buy a Y2K stock and got creamed.  I just begun trading and this was one of my first trades.  I really wasn't prepared for it even though I had studied on the proposition for months before I finally took the plunge.  There really isn't anything like experience.  You just have to take your lumps.

I noticed the head and shoulders pattern too late to help me.  This pattern was developing for many months or even longer than a year, as I discovered.  Anyway, I found out that you just don't ignore or wish away this pattern.  If it's for real, you better sell.  I didn't and was sorry for it later.

Now I am hearing about a head and shoulders pattern in gold.  But these charts are very short term.  So, at this point I am doubtful about its validity.  Anyway, the one chart I saw in a write up on Kitco has already been invalidated by the rally in gold today.  If this is the pattern that's being cited, then there is no valid head and shoulders pattern now.

One can get carried away with technical indicators like chart patterns.  When it comes to trading, a good foundation in fundamentals is the best bet in my experience.  If I had understood that the company I bought was getting all its performance out of Y2K alone, then I may have saved myself some grief.  I knew enough to know that Y2K was a one time thing that wouldn't be enough to carry forward into the future.  So, what about gold?  What is it's fundamentals?

I have written about this already.  There isn't any change in central bank policies.  So, there should be no change in the trading patterns of gold until this changes.  Central bank policies, especially the Fed, is to reflate the economy.  This is to support the economy as it struggles with the current downturn.  Yet, Fed policy alone will not spur growth that is needed in order to service debt and spending levels as they are.  Something has to change, and/or something has to give.  The thing that has to change is that there needs to be a growth policy, and in addition to that, the thing that has to give is the reflation effort.  As long as the current policy mix remains the same, there is little change in the fundamentals, and little reason to be bearish on gold.

DIRECT project

The wikipedia entry describing the DIRECT project is here.  Further reading on the subject leads me to believe that the speculative posts I made are going to be only in my imagination.  It isn't going to happen unless there is a change, but that isn't likely either.  Hard to say what might happen if additional changes are made.

Instead of recycling the ET, the plan is to de-orbit them just as before.  That pretty much knocks my ideas out of the ballpark.

So, where is this plan going?  It just looks like a modified Constellation program which uses the Shuttle derived system, but not with a sidemount.  It is said to be less capable than the original Ares rockets, but much cheaper and faster to be put into service.  The gap with no manned launch capability will be cut from 7 years to as little as 2 or 3 years.

There was some discussion of the RL-10 rocket engines.   Another variant of this engine which is still in development, would allow the engine to "throttle well" - between 104% to 8% thrust.  The RL-10 design is going to be used in the JUS (Jupiter upper stage), which will serve as the Earth Departure Stage , per Constellation plans.

It is not clear if the throttling engine is in the works for this system.  Nor what it will do.

If it could shut down and restart and throttle well, it could become quite versatile, I would think.  Just a bit of speculation here, this engine could seem more like a jet engine than a rocket.  But much more capable than a jet engine of course.  With such an engine, maneurvering could become more sophisticated.  But for what purpose?  This may answer that question.   It will be used on the Altair lander to land on the moon.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Politics is nuts

It is in this country.  There was this saying:  "God takes care of drunks, little children, and the United States of America."  Only this country seems to have some of the strangest things happen to it. With the people running this country, it may well take a deity to keep it in one piece.

This may bother a few people for me to write this, but why the hell is it that things like Pearl Harbor and 9/11 attacks happen even though there ought to be someone in charge who can stop these things?  That's just two of the more spectacular examples.  You could also mention things like the Challenger and Columbia accidents, numerous wars (which are winnable, but the government perversely seems to insist on losing them), and lately, this Wikileaks thing.  The idiocy of this global warming scam also fits into this.  The financial meltdown too.  It goes on and on.

Isn't there anybody in this government who knows what the hell they are doing?  Isn't there anyone with a brain running this show?  But people vote for this.  At least, some people do.  The rest don't bother to vote.  Who knows which ones are the smarter ones.

Lunar oxygen as reaction mass

The discovery of water on the Moon seems encouraging for many reasons.  Among them, there would be a way to make fuel on the Moon, as opposed to bringing it from Earth, which is expensive.

It has occurred to me that even though there may appear to be plenty of water available on the Moon, that better uses of it could be found.  Before long, with overuse of this resource, you could find yourself back into the position that you were in before.  Water is too scarce.  It needs to be preserved.

But there is a lot of oxygen on the Moon.  If there was a way to utilize that instead of burning hydrogen and oxygen together for thrust, then the fuel problem could be solved.  The question arose, why not use oxygen instead of hydrogen and heat it up as the reaction mass?  It would be the same concept as  Parkin's , but instead of hydrogen being heated up by microwaves, do it with oxygen.  Perhaps this isn't a good idea because oxygen is so reactive.  But if a way could be found, then here's the way off the Moon.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Conscience of a Liberal- Review

This is a political book, not a book about economics.  To begin this review
of Krugman's book, let's begin with these two quotes:

"Because in the end, democracy is what being a liberal is all about."

"...movement conservatism has been antidemocratic, with an attraction to
authoritarianism, from the beginning..."

This is Krugman's dichotomy in a nutshell.  It is a black and white definition.
Good and evil.  Good guys and bad guys.  There can be no place in between.  No
other way.

If democracy and liberalism is one and the same, and movement conservatism is
antidemocratic and authoritarian, there isn't much room for dissent. Therefore,
you must agree with liberals, or you must become an Eisenhower type Republican.
As Krugman said, Eisenhower Republicans offered no real opposition to liberalism.
Active dissent from liberalism means authoritarianism in his formulation.  Very
handy way of disposing of dissent.  Just attach a pejorative label upon opponents
who strongly disagree.

Krugman unabashedly seeks equality as a value in itself.  A question arises: Is
equality a worthy object of pursuit in its own right?  To Krugman, it would seem
to mean the absense of strife.  But what about the pursuit of wealth?  Is that
pursuit a worthy goal?  This book is mostly silent on that subject.  What little
that is said would indicate that the pursuit of wealth is a secondary issue.  If
inequality is a problem, how do you reconcile that with the pursuit of wealth?
Krugman's answer: sacrifice it to the greater value of equality.

He argues that inequality is the cause of the political nastiness that exists today.
Yet, it is entirely acceptable for liberals to be partisan, while it is not
acceptable to be partisan and against liberalism.  What if you don't want to be
equal?  What if you want to excel?  Does that make you at fault for disturbing the
community just because you want more for yourself?  Moreover, it does not follow
that shunning the pursuit of wealth creates abundance.  The abundance has to come
from somewhere.  Does it not come from those who want to excel?  It doesn't come from
those who just want to be equal and for everybody else to be equal.  If so, then
how can that be possible?  What reason is there to produce for no profit?  It cannot
come from those who demand equality and adherence to that standard from all.  In
the end, by that standard, all must remain at their stations.  If a little strife is to price
for pursuit of wealth, isn't it worth it?  Conversely, if equality for all is the
price of peace, then isn't that price too high?

Perhaps these arguments are probably too simplistic.  But that is generally what
Krugman is saying.  He blames inequality for our politics today.  He blames
inequality for poor economic performance.  But he fails to show why equality
produces wealth.  He can show the plausibility that inequality can contribute
to poor economic performance, but that is not the same as saying that equality
produces wealth.  To make that claim, it would stretch credulity to the breaking
point.  He blames strife on the inequality of wealth, but he shows no way to
reduce strife by having more production of wealth from all.  Instead, pursuit of
wealth must not be encouraged for the good of the community.

But is the pursuit of wealth is a problem?  Or is the reaction to it that must be
examined?  What are the possible reactions?  You can encourage it in order
that more might have it, or you can discourage it so that nobody can have it.
If pursuit of wealth is the problem in itself, then you must discourage it as Krugman
indicates.  There can be no other possibility.  If the pursuit of wealth is not the
problem, then there are other possibilities.  Such as encouraging it so that more
can have it.  But Krugman doesn't favor this.

In short, Krugman says that inequality distubs people, so it should be remedied.
He doesn't recognize that there are other ways to deal with this, and insists that
others must agree with him.  If not, they must be bad people.  It is hard to
reason with someone who thinks those that disagree are bad people and that they
are morally inferior, and that their moral view must be discouraged.  There has to
be a better way.  Krugman's book doesn't show the way.  It's his way or the highway.
But he is all for Democracy.  After all, he is a liberal.  The other guys are bad guys.